The Blue Rags made quite a splash two years ago with their ingenious blend of pop, alt-country, and ragtime. It was all the more surprising given they’re on the label that pioneered grunge. This time around, the Blue Rags have toned down the ragtime just a bit and have gone all out twang ‘n’ roll. “Can’t Tie That Knot” is a standout—three minutes of pure rockabilly swagger with a Bakersfield country twist that recalls the toe-tapping tunes of Buck Owens at his best. Elsewhere, ample supplies of swinging piano keep the Rags’ ragtime an ever-present and irresistible element of the band’s joyful sound. This is true hillbilly music that blends genres ingeniously and keeps you dancing rather than crying in your beer.
// Notes from the Road
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